When you’re important, and your child has been diagnosed with a ‘Mental Disorder’, you can get away with bloody anything!
My dad had Diplomatic status. Recently I found my mother’s old Diplomatic Passport. I’m not sure how she managed to keep that, I had mine taken off me as soon as we arrived back in New Zealand. I quite liked my red Diplomatic Passport.
I was misdiagnosed with Petit Mal Epilepsy when I was 4, about the same time my Aunt recalls a desperate conversation with my mother, who was calling her from London, England, where we lived. There was a problem about a head injury, mine. I wonder what that was all about? Did she think throwing me down a set of stairs could give me Petit Mal Epilepsy? Or did the exasperated woman throw her 4 year old son down a set of stairs, as a result of him having what was thought to be Petit Mal Epilepsy?
Petit Mal Epilepsy has been renamed to Absences. The Brain turns off without warning, then turns on again without leaving the sufferer any clue that it was off for a time. Everybody knows, except the person with it. So people like that can literally be punched in the mouth, and bleed profusely, and not know it. When they do know it, well they know they’re sore and bleeding, they don’t know what they did to cause it. The Absence might be only a few seconds long, just long enough for others to notice, and do something!
What more can be said, other than, it wasn’t Petit Mal Epilepsy/Absences, it was and still is AD/HD Inattentive Type. If I had Petit Mal Epilepsy the drug I take to alleviate AD/HD Inattentive Type would make the seizures worse, maybe even give me Grand Mal Seizures?
It’s still a brain disease, a Mental Disorder, a good excuse to beat the crap out of a child with it, throw him down sets of stairs, and treat him really badly.
Children with Mental Disorders do weird things.
I knew a child with a Mental Disorder once and he’d just explode in a rage, for no apparent reason. He was absolutely crazy. Chairs would get smashed, desks would get smashed, windows were always a favourite to be smashed. Pens, pencils, crayons, and paper would fly everywhere. Tears would pour like that proverbial rain statement fancy writers like to use. He’d wet himself, that really got a good laugh. His body temperature would visibly rise, the onlooker could clearly see he had lost his mind, somewhere. Maybe he just forgot to pick it up when he left for school?
A calm would come over him, briefly. Then he’d be dragged off to the Principal’s for his well deserved hiding, which was always really painful, but nothing changed. Every now and then he’d fly into another rage, for no apparent reason.
Then there was the walk home/back. Other students would go to this child and abuse him. Say the meanest of things, trying to get him to ‘go off’ again. That was such fun. They would say ‘the teacher says you’ve got a Mental Problem’ and ‘we can see you’ve pissed yourself again!’ I could hear them really clearly from where I was, observing, silently. What they didn’t realise is that they were getting him to ‘go off’ again, it was just that he took so long to respond, by the time their efforts had their effect, they’d forgotten them.
When your mum & dad have Diplomatic status, they can get away with bloody anything, just like children at school do.
For parents with a child, who happens to have a ‘Mental Disorder,’ everybody knows the parents are just stressed to beyond the maximum, that any parent can be expected to endure. This child doesn’t notice you for long periods. This child is oblivious to your instructions and demands, but not always. Sometimes he seems quite normal, just like your other children. You think you’re making headway with him, you get tricked into believing he’s become normal, and is actually taking notice of you. He has an Autism Spectrum Disorder. Even when he is thinking right, he doesn’t know it!
Parents have to take the lead, they have to be encouraging, volunteer information, bolster confidence, display positive attitudes, exude self esteem! They have to be the PARENT! When one drug is clearly not working, get another one. When a style of parenting is failing, change it. Can it really be that hard?
My sister came to me a couple of years or so ago and asked “Graeme, I can’t make up my mind if it’s my imagination or if it really happened, but can you remember the day your blood was splattered all over the kitchen?”
“Well of course I can remember” I said, “You don’t forget that in a hurry.”
Stressed out parents do funny things, well maybe ‘funny’ is not the right word. When they’re important stressed out parents, and they do their ‘funny’ things, they get away with it, as everybody knows they also have a child with a Mental Problem. Anybody else would beat the crap out of that child too, as that is normal parenting behaviour. That’s why they spent so much time hiding it, as it was so normal.
My advice is, ‘never believe an 8 year old who has a Mental Problem,’ 8 year old’s with Mental Problems that involve no short term memory are unreliable. Do not organise your day on the ability of an 8 year old with a Mental Problem to remember a conversation 6 hours before.
If you want your 8 year old at home at a specific time, write a note and put it in his pocket.
Write another note and put it in his lunch.
Call the school by phone and ask them to remind him to be home at a specific time.
If all that seems too much, drive to the damn school, pick ’em up, and take him home.
Do not rely on an 8 years old’s memory of this conversation:
“Don’t be late home today Graeme.” “No mum I won’t, I give you my word!”
I wish I’d never said those words. Actually I wish I wasn’t born. As I’m still here, take notice of my words, even 8 year old’s without a Mental Problem are unreliable.